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SDG 3: Good health and wellbeing

scott gordon's picture


My pledge is to grow more of my own vegetables sustainably at home by building wicking beds out of primarily recycled materials. Growing your own food helps to reduce our environmental footprint by eliminating transport and packaging requirements, and often uses less water and energy than industrially produced food. Furthermore, it can be cheaper than buying vegetables from the supermarket in the long-term. Wicking beds are a type of waterproofed planter where soil is suspended above a layer of water, allowing plants to draw water up through their roots as required, as opposed to relying on rainfall or irrigation. This reduces the amount of water required for successful growth, suppresses weeds by keeping the topmost layer of soil dry (thus negating the need for herbicides) and improves plant health by maintaining consistent moisture levels. The primary impediment to wicking beds is that typically they require large amounts of new plastic in order to waterproof the planters, and they are more expensive than typical beds. I have recently helped to build a traditional wicking bed and have observed its effectiveness – particularly in growing leafy greens that can be difficult to manage in Australia’s hot, dry climate. My proposal is to see if recycled wine barrels (cut in half) can be used as a way to create effective wicking beds while increasing the usage of recycled materials and reducing cost. Wine barrels would negate the need for expensive, energy intensive plastic to be used for waterproofing, and reduce the overall cost of the wicking bed itself. Furthermore, if the idea is successful, it could be adapted to other used items, such as metal drums or even bathtubs. As such, I think my pledge could contribute to various sustainable development goals, most notably: 2) zero hunger, by increasing people’s ability to grow nutritious food, 6) clean water, by reducing water usage required for food production, 12) responsible consumption and production, by reducing usage of environmentally costly products (particularly herbs and leafy greens that are typically packaged in plastic) and 13) climate action.


Stuti Nandra's picture

REDUCING plastic waste

Turn plastic waste into creative uses such as using them as flower pots for indoor or outdoor use so that amount of plastic which will end up in waste will be reduced. In fact most of the plastic usually doesn't end reaching the recycling facilities and instead ends up inside birds who mistake it for food, on in marine life, when it escapes into the oceans. Furthermore, by using plastic bottles as pots for plants, we would also be reducing the amount of pollution around us, and inturn promoting pollution-less air. When we start to keep plastics inside our house rather than throw them out, we realise the amount of plastic waste we might've potentially added to our oceans or landfill, allowing us to reconsider how we buy plastic.


Shenela Fernando's picture

Reduce meat and dairy

I started my journey to be pescatarian a few months ago and I'd like to take a further step to reduce my daily consumption as well. -Replace dairy milk with plant based milks. - Find more recipes to focus on whole, plant based foods.


Xiaoyu Li's picture

COOK at home

Cook at home instead buying take-away. I pledge to start cooking at home and stop ordering take-away. I will make a meal plan every time before cooking to reduce food waste. I will reduce plastic use, such as plastic bag and plastic cutlery.



Xiaoyu Li | 11/15/2020 - 15:17

Try to cook 4 types of dishes in a week.


Ibtisam Shahbaz's picture

Backyard Gardening

My step is to grow my own fruits and veggies in our garden. Growing your own food reduces the amount of harmful chemicals polluting our environment and waterways. Moreover, organically growing your own food is sustainable and nourishes your soil by using natural fertilizers. Overall, I hope to grow my own fruits, herbs and veggies so I can minimize my carbon footprint. This is one of the steps I would take to live a more ecofriendly life.


Nichola Ingvarson-Favretto's picture

sustainable growing & eating

I am excited to create a veggie patch in my yard where I will grow fruit, vegetables, herbs, native plants and flowers. This step will be beneficial for the environment, as it will contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions and waste. My family and I will be spending less at the supermarket and will benefit from a healthier diet. I will know exactly what will go into the process of growing my own produce, i.e. no pesticides and no GMOs. I'm grateful to have the resources to contribute.


Ved Walde's picture

Less Meat, More green.

I will progressively increase my greens- vegetables, and fruits consumption while reducing my meat consumption. With something so routine like meat, which forms the foundation of our daily meals, something which is the number one food on the tables of people worldwide, contributes significantly to climate change. Moreover, animal culture for food production is regarded as the most disastrous invention of humankind. The rationale underlying being the inefficiency in meat production. The production of meat involves an immense burden on the ecosystem. To cultivate one kilogram of beef, it improvidently demands 25 kilograms of grain or fodder to feed the livestock (Kehoe, 2016) and nearly 15000 liters of water (World Water Development Report, 2019). Pork is comparatively less exhaustive, and chicken is less still. Furthermore, about 30% of the earth's arable land is used to foster livestock (Steinfeld,2006), collectively responsible for 18 percent of global greenhouse-gas emissions (FAO, 2007). These resources could be progressively used for the reconstruction of the socio-economic fabric. Meat production and consumption are escalating progressively – The Global meat production has quadrupled over the past 50 years – The total production was roughly 71 million tons in 1961 to over 340 million tons in 2018 (Hannah Ritchie, 2019). And to support this extravagant production, more than 80 billion animals are slaughtered each year for meat at an unsustainable rate to feed the rapidly multiplying population- The current global-human population of 7.6 billion is estimated to attain 8.6 billion in 2030. And then to 9.8 billion in 2050 and 11.2 billion by the end of 2100 (The World Population Prospects, 2017). Without opting for prescriptive measures to mitigate carbon-emissions from a population that continues to grow and consume more than in the past, exceeding the biosphere's absorption capacity leading an unhealthy amount of emissions left unabsorbed by the ecosystem as a consequence. Meat production is predominantly a hefty check written against our planet's dwindling reserves and is solely accountable for World Hunger, Environmental Degradation, Human Health, and Animal Welfare; All at Once (Friedrich, 2018).


Bhavya Nagaraj's picture

Energy saving mode

My step towards living sustainably is to save energy while performing all my day to day activities. By doing small steps like putting on a sweater and turning the thermostat down on a cold evening, turning off appliances like bulbs and computers off when they are not in use. Small steps starting at home can help make an impact around oneself. I pledge to take small steps to save energy around me and make other people around me practice the same.


Cody Hemphill's picture


As someone who has grown up in a family that eats meat every day, the thought of going vegetarian has never seemed realistic. Food, and consequently meat consumption, is ingrained in both my parents’ culture and upbringing. My goal is to cook vegetarian for three nights a week for my family. While I won’t be committing to a completely vegetarian diet, I hope that by cooking for my family I can reduce our collective household meat consumption permanently through some small, first steps. It will not only result in more healthier eating, but also reduce our impact on the environment through a commitment that is achievable by all of us. Rather than focusing on changing solely my individual eating habit, I believe it would be more impactful to create collective change to a wider group (my family) beyond just myself. By introducing three meat-free days a week, I hope that the transition will seem less confronting and a lot more achievable for my family, so they are more likely to jump on board.


Shivika Sharma's picture

seasonal Steps

I vow to eat seasonal produce that is locally sourced. Through this step, I hope to consume food the way nature intended but to also support local farmers and food industries where possible. I will be sourcing all of my fresh produce from local farmer's markets for the next year.



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